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Chemical sciences posts

Amber and alloys – a quick quiz Quiz

by David, 11 April 2018 | 0 comments

Black lightning bolt in purple circle

From the time of dinosaurs to mysterious materials, this week’s quiz is a real brain bender. Time to test your knowledge!

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Modern recipes for ancient grains News

by David, 23 February 2018 | 0 comments

Image of a bowl of muffins and some bags labeled Teff

You’ve heard of rice and wheat. You may have heard of maize and quinoa. But have you heard of teff? This ancient grain has been feeding the people of Ethiopia for thousands of years. And thanks to the work of CSIRO, it might soon be feeding you too!

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The world welcomes four new elements News

by David, 30 March 2017 | 0 comments

Nihonium element 113, Moscovium element 115, Tennessine element 117, and Oganesson element 118

The periodic table doesn’t change very often, which is why it’s worth celebrating when it does. This month, three new elements were inaugurated at a ceremony in Russia. And in Tokyo, a fourth was welcomed to the world. Say hello to moscovium, tennessine, oganessson and nihonium! Let’s back up a bit: what is an element?…

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When crystals align News

by David, 20 January 2017 | 0 comments

Inside a small sample of powder, there hides a gigantic secret. In just a teaspoon of the stuff you’ll find the entire surface area of a football field. It sounds like something from Back to the Future, but for CSIRO scientists it’s the norm. The sample contains Metal Organic Frameworks, or MOFs, and they are made up of crystals that…

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Who knew? Sea birds fight climate change! Activity

by David, 9 January 2017 | 0 comments

You might think we know everything there is to know about climate change. We know that greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide and methane, are trapping heat. And we know that average temperatures are climbing worldwide. But there’s still lots for us to learn, and new discoveries are being made all the time. For example,…

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When life gives you lemons… Activity

by David, 18 January 2016 | 1 comments

Safety: This activity requires boiling water. Younger scientists should get an adult to help. You will need 2 teaspoons citric acid 2 teaspoons table salt 2 cups sugar 1L water Juice and rind of 3 large lemons Kettle Large bowl Sieve or strainer Wooden spoon 2L jug/bottle

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Make a piece of shortbread Activity

by David, 13 January 2016 | 0 comments

Safety: This activity involves an oven and electric beaters. Younger mathematicians should ask an adult for help. You will need 15 g butter, softened 10 mL caster sugar 0.3 mL vanilla extract 31 mL plain flour 8 mL rice flour Extra butter to grease the baking tray Extra flour for kneading

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Discovering DNA’s repair crew

by David, 16 October 2015 | 0 comments

Hidden within our cells, DNA is the hard drive of the human body. Each copy of DNA contains instructions for all the proteins needed to make a person. But this creative compendium is always under attack. This year’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry went to three people who found out what’s repairing our genetic treasure.

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Pollution solutions

by dhadmin, 20 June 2014 | 1 comments

Humans produce a lot of waste, from flushing toilets to mining metals, like the copper in electrical wires that power computers, phones and tablets. To clean up our act, a new way to purify contaminated wastewater from mines has been developed by CSIRO scientists. At a copper mining site in Queensland, the first demonstration of…

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Perfumes for pests

by , 30 May 2014 | 0 comments

Cross-species communication between citrus plants, bacteria, jumping plant lice and wasps begins with a fresh, minty smell. Jumping plant lice, Diaphorina citri, are small insects that eat the sap of citrus trees like oranges and lemons. As they suck on tree blood, the plants produce the minty smell of wintergreen oil. Wintergreen oil, or methyl salicylate,…

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